Thursday, December 22, 2016

Day 4 – Italy here we come! Dec. 22nd

Let me start by wishing my daughter Jessica a Happy Birthday. She stayed behind to take care of the dogs and the house.

 Well we were up again early. This time 5:30 a.m. We needed to take the rental car back to the airport and this included refueling it. To save time Aaron routed us through several villages. For those familiar with Germany you know what that meant. The roads, they were windy and I mean windy. Then consider it was dark and the speed – well it was an adventure. Not for Pam who was sick by the time she arrived at the airport.

Sara drove their car to leave at the airport with Pam. Aaron and I dropped off the rental car. Now you might think that the drop off would be close to the airport but no. We were over a mile from the airport in the dark at some vacant lot. Aaron made a call and after a little walking we found a lady who would shuttle us to the airport. She drove a van with a 5 speed filled with smoke but at least we didn’t have to walk.

This airport is one of the smaller airports and we couldn’t check luggage until 2 hours before departure. We found a little café (yes even in the airport we had some food choices). I had a breakfast sandwich made with salami and egg. Actual was pretty good.

We then went and waited in a line to check our bags. Now it was supposed to open at 8:30 a.m. but the folks took their time and finally opened about 8:45. Bags check, time for security. Like to say this went easier than the stop at KCI with a pocket knife accidental left in a purse. But unfortunately, we (me) packed the plastic bag with shaving cream in the carry on. That required Pam to be stopped and the bag opened. But no arrest so we were able to move on.

We were now in a small area that was filling up fast with clearly not enough chairs. Boarding was to occur at 10:00 and departure at 10:30. So about 9:35 we got in line to go through the gate. At 10 no airline personnel was at the gate nor was there a plane. The sign by the gate changed at 10:25 that our departure would be at 11:10. Then about 10:45 Aaron notice on the screen they changed our gate from 5 to 4. Well we were standing in gate 5 which was the first gage on the east side of the airport. So, you would have to assume that gate 4 was on the west side. Aaron took off and we followed. At first the 75 people or so looked at us but did not move.
By the time we got to the west side (we could still see the east side) the 75+ folks started to head our way. But we had a problem. According to the signs Gate 1- 3 was on the west side and gates 4 – 7 were on the east side. So, as the crowd reached us we told them there was no gate 4. Everyone looked puzzled and we headed back to gate 5. Where we learned gate 4 and 5 were together. Mom gave her son a hard time for his leadership decisions.

Finally, at about 11:00 they opened the gate and checked us in, well kind of, we were herded into another room where we stood waiting for the plane to be ready (it just had arrived). Then if you’ve never been at a small airport. We started walking onto the air strip. We had to walk a bit to work our way around the plane to get to the other side. There were two boarding doors and we loaded from the back. Should I add that it was raining the whole time. Oh…. The adventures we are having.

The plane was packed and the 3 of them sat together while I sat across the aisle. Pam thought it was funny that I had a dad and little girl beside me. She called her little Jeffery based on Bill Cosby comedy skit. But the girl sat and watched cartoons on her dads ipad the whole way.

The photo below should tell you how the other three enjoyed the trip.

Now we traveled on a cheap flight. What do I mean about cheap flight?  No free water or peanuts. But even better they were selling raffle tickets on the plane. Ready for this one? They were also selling after shave, perfume and other cosmetics. See photo of the gentlemen walking the aisle.

While the flight wasn’t too bad the landing was rough so rough that the people aboard the plane started clapping after the plane came to a stop.

Took a while to get our bags and then we caught a shuttle to “Central City” of Rome. I thought the traffic was bad in Germany. See some of the photos.

I was actual sitting in a chair facing backwards to take pictures. The car is parked. The streets are narrow and cars were often double parked like this.

 Traffic was like this most of the way.
More traffic but look down the street how tight everything is

If we seen one we've seen hundreds of these. By the way they don't wait for light changes. They simply drive between, behind cars and keep on moving.
You will see rows and rows of these along the streets.
One flying by.
They have no alley so their trash cans are lined up on the street in front of stories. See these almost every block.

We arrived at our Bed and Breakfast. As the photos show its part an old building that appeared to once have a street run through it. Two bedroom, kitchen and unique bathroom for our 5 day say.

Our Bedroom
The Kitchen
Aaron and Sara Bedroom
 This fountain is outside our door. Now its outside but in a court yard

Everyone was hungry so we started walking down the street passing mini markets, bakery’s, bars and a variety of other stores. We finally stopped at a very small restaurant where I had my first Italian pizza.

While eating, we visited with a couple from Australia. They were on a 9-month vacation traveling around Europe and North Africa. Interesting people. Then some ice cream (I should say we got Gelato) and back to our rooms for a evening of relaxation. The TV didn’t work so we used my computer and watch Netflix. Up early Thursday and off to see Rome!  

1 comment:

  1. You must have flown Ryan Air! Germans in general are VERY punctual people/society and being late is not acceptable to them, but all our friends who flew Ryan Air, always said to be flexible and like the military, it's a hurry up and wait stance!
    Glad to see you did enjoy some Gelato (Germans use Gelato, too!) I love and prefer German/Italian style pizza. I like a tiny bit of sauce, but not as much as American places use!! Germany and Italy ruined me, and oh man German beer. I HATE American beer, but man a German beer is so good! I also developed a love of wine in Germany! ;)